PROVIDENCE, R.I. – It’s feeling like déjà vu all over again for Providence College at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center.
The Friars played an NCAA East Regional game in their hometown for the third time in five years Saturday afternoon, starting down the same road – being a No. 4 seed and one of the last teams into the 16-team field – as they took to winning the national title in 2015.
Say what you want about it being a “home” game and being “rewarded” as a bottom seed playing mere miles from campus, but the Friars showed their battle-back spirit once again and ousted top-seeded Minnesota State from the tournament with a 6-3 win after being eliminated from Hockey East title contention themselves two weeks ago against Boston College.
“When I went into the locker room after the BC series, it wasn’t a great feeling,” said Providence head coach Nate Leaman, whose team is now 23-11-6 on the season. “But at the end of the day, getting into the NCAA tournament is really about your body of work. We challenged ourselves on the road. … I think it’s not failure, it’s growing. We grew throughout the year and we’re playing some really good hockey.”